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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » EXPERT ADVICE » Ask Scarleteen » Is left-over semen re-absorbed in the vagina after intercourse?

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Author Topic: Is left-over semen re-absorbed in the vagina after intercourse?
aj_stylez07
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Hi There,

I've asked a similar question about this before but I would really appreciate further clarification on this subject. The reason behind this is because I'm really new to all this stuff and when I imagine the thought of having sex with my gf, sometimes I feel disgusted at the thought of her previous partner's semen being present inside of her and i feel so bad thinking this way [Frown] I thought the only way to get rid of this thought is to do research and educate myself

So I started looking for answers on google and I could not find any biological answers but I found this on wiki answers which made me feel even worse:

"Status of unused semen inside a women's body after sexual intercourse?

Answer

Any "unused" sperm and semen will simply drain from the woman's vagina. Since a mans semen is ejaculated deep into a woman's vagina, it's unreasonable to think that it will all drain out, what remains will be absorbed into the woman's body. The semen that is re-absorbed becomes an actual part of the woman with the potential to remain with her for the rest of her life. Thus, a woman who has several sexual encounters with a man, or sexual encounters with several men, will carry a small part of each of her lovers with her forever."

Please tell me this cannot possibly be true? Could you please explain to me what happens to the left-over semen in the vagina, if unsuccessful in fertilization, after intercourse? Is the semen absorbed and utilized in the female body? (is it integrated into the body and is visible on the body and physique? - eg. when a person mention's when a girl is 'glowing' what does that mean?) Is it true that semen re-absorbed becomes a part of the woman?

I apologize for the long question and I know it sounds like a stupid question but I would really appreciate it if you could explain this to me! From my knowledge I thought macrophages ate up the left over semen and sperm and destroyed it with enzymes?

And is there a website or book I could read to further understand the biological mechanisms involved in sperm degradation inside a woman's reproductive organ?

Thank you so much in advance!

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Heather
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The vagina is a self-cleaning organ that is in constant cycles of cleaning itself. Most semen drains out after ejaculation, but anything left over is going to exit via a woman's discharges per her vagina's cleaning cycle. Semen isn't somehow treated any differently by a woman's body than menses or other fluids are.

Google and yahoo answers often are terrible places to look for sound information, by the by, and that answer particularly sounds like someone's wishful thinking. [Razz]

However, it sounds like your real issue is that you need to get to be okay with your partner having had previous partners before, not about her having had previous semen in her body.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Heather
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Also, when our body absorbs cells -- like sperm cells or unfertilized ova, it's through a process called "cell necrosis." In other words, the cells just die and are recycled, effectively.

But making that into some sort of symbolic "part of ourselves" doesn't make any sense to me, and sounds a lot like romanticism, especially since that guy'd (I'm presuming it was a guy: the way that was said sounds a lot like a man talking about women and projecting unto our bodies) not likely say that, say, about cells shed from our tongues or bowels.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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aj_stylez07
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Hi,

Thank you so much for your reply!

I guess psychologically it does affect me and I wish it didn't. I really love my gf and I want to stop thinking about it because from the way I've been brought up as a child and perceived the world, sex was something as sort of a taboo unless a person was married. Just knowing that I'm the only person to make a mark on her life makes me feel more special to her instead of feeling like another guy in the line if that makes sense? :S (hence the question abt the answer given in google)

One query about your answer: You mentioned, "In other words, the cells just die and are recycled, effectively." If a man's sperm is foreign to a woman's body, how is it recycled? Wouldn't it be then excreted from the body in some way or form as a foreign substance?

And is there any website or textbook that you would recommend reading in regard to learning more about the biological mechanisms in this subject? (eg. enzymes involved, type of macrophages etc.)

Thank you so much again I really appreciate the time you've taken to answer this! [Smile]

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Stephanie_1
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You know, everyone has a past that is a little bit different, and our experiences then would be different. As Heather said above though: You need to get to be okay with the fact that she's had a previous partner or previous partners. Ultimately, it is her decision because it is her body, and one that you can't change. What you can change, however, is how you respond to the fact that she decided at that time that she was ready and that sex of any kind felt right to her. Just as she would be expected to be okay with that were you in one another's positions.

As well, a lot of people and events in life are important and memorable, and thus a lot of them leave a proverbial "mark." Her having had a previous partner does not change what the two of you have together - your relationship is it's own.

As per your other question: I'm not sure about a book that would explain it. You can read about cell absorbtion and recycling in mostly any biology textbook, and that may be a place to start if that's your interest. But to clarify, cells that are in a person's body can be used in some ways - so yes some sperm if not excreated from the body can be re-absorbed just as a woman's own cells - because they're still human cells. But they would be dead cells used for something else, not live cells that become a lasting part of a woman in some romantacized fashion as explain in the wiki answer. Does that make more sense.

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"Sometimes the majority only means that all the fools are on the same side" ~Anon

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aj_stylez07
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Yes thank you very much [Smile]
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pattyyy
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Hi I was just wandering does the dead sperm that become recycled cells in the woman's womb! Could they in any way be used to become part of a future egg being produced???
Also any vaginal fluids that enter the male's sexual organs during intercourse, can the same thing happen? I mean can any live cells that enter that enter a male's sexual organs and die when in there be absorbed and then recycled????

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Heather
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No.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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pattyyy
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What exactly could these recycled cells be used for? Will these recycled cells stay with her for the rest of her life? Could you elaborate or give an analogy how to understand this all? I recently was diagnosed with aspergers so it's in my nature to obsess! I love my Wife, I believe no matter what happened we were meant to be as we are soul mates! We have 2 beautiful children and we are now both 32 and have mostly been together since we were both 16 but there have been some intervals! The time we were apart because I was moved away by my parents for behavior problems! I had only been with her a couple of months! During that time had different relationships! For my part i had alot of partners who meant nothing to me! My wife during that period had 2 boyfriends as she was unsure if I would ever come back and got on with her life! I can't hold that against her! She told me that she had unprotected sex with both of her previous partners from all that time ago! I blame and loath myself for the past! I really hated one of her ex-boyfriends and the thought that there is some trace of him still in her really bothers me! PLEASE HELP!

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Ambrosead600

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Heather
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There are no "recycled" sperm cells to talk about in the first place in the way you are thinking. Like I said, this is not something real. Sperm cells that do not fertilize an egg do not stay in the body. The vagina cleans itself as a constant process, and that includes eliminating waste like bacteria or sperm cells.

The only person's cells in your wife's body are her own. However, her life history is what it is, and like with any of us, our previous life experiences are part of who we are (emotionally, not on a cellular level). So, rather than getting hung up on poor misunderstandings of biology, it sounds like you would be best served just making peace with the fact that she, like you, had a life before you that included other partners, including some you did not like.

[ 03-22-2014, 02:07 PM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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pattyyy
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Hi Heather, thank you so much for taking the time to respond! I've been going through a tough time of late as I am receiving CBT therapy so I'm having to over the past events and the fact I had a strange upbringing which denied us just having each other from when we were 16 comes up in my counseling sessions! There seems to be some rubbish on the internet regarding this subject! I can be at peace with both our past I'm just trying to make sense of my feelings!

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Ambrosead600

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